Burns, Oregon is a small city located in Harney County, Oregon, United States. The city is rich in history, with several notable events having taken place in and around the area. Here are seven significant historical events that have taken place near Burns, Oregon:
1. Harney Massacre:
The Harney Massacre was a Native American massacre that happened on January 20, 1880. Northern Paiute Indians attacked a stagecoach carrying settlers near Malheur Lake, a few miles south of Burns. The attack killed three white passengers and injured one. The massacre led to retaliation by the US Army, who killed several Northern Paiutes.
2. Oregon Outback Military Trail:
The Oregon Outback Military Trail was established in 1860 to provide a new route for military travel from California to Oregon through the harsh terrain of the High Desert. The trail went from Camp Warner in present-day Warner Valley, Oregon, to Fort Harney, which later became the site of Burns. The trail provided a crucial transportation link for military troops, freight, and settlers.
3. Miller's Dance Hall:
Miller's Dance Hall was the site of the infamous Miller gang shootout in 1902. The Miller Gang, a notorious group of bank robbers and outlaws, were chased down by law enforcement and cornered in Miller's Dance Hall near Burns. The shootout resulted in the death of gang leader Butch Miller and four of his accomplices.
4. The Great Sheep Raid of 1906:
In 1906, a group of sheepherders and their flocks were run out of Harney County by a group of cattlemen who were unhappy with the presence of sheep in the area. The event, known as the Great Sheep Raid of 1906, was a significant conflict between cattlemen and sheepherders during the turn of the century.
5. B-17 Bomber Crash Site:
The crash site of a B-17 bomber that crashed during World War II is located near Burns. The crash occurred on January 6, 1943, and resulted in the deaths of all ten crew members on board. The wreckage and a plaque commemorating the event can still be seen today.
6. Malheur National Wildlife Refuge Occupation:
In 2016, a group of armed anti-government protesters occupied the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, located about 30 miles south of Burns. The group was protesting against the federal government's control of land and resources in the west. The occupation lasted for 41 days before law enforcement arrested the protesters.
7. Oregon Standoff:
In 2016, the same year as the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge Occupation, the Oregon Standoff took place in Burns. This event started when a local rancher, Dwight Hammond Jr., and his son, Steven Hammond, were sentenced to prison for arson on federal land. A group of protesters came to Burns to rally against what they saw as overreach by the federal government. The standoff lasted for weeks and resulted in the death of one protester and the arrest of several others.
In conclusion, Burns, Oregon, is a city rich in history, with many significant events having taken place in and around the area. From Native American massacres to modern-day protests against the federal government, the history of Burns is a fascinating and often tumultuous one.
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